Monmouthshire at LLANVAPLEY
Saturday 25th MARCH 2000
by James Griffiths

Going soft(ish) except for the uphill cornfield where the horses sank in about 18 inches.
As this was used three times per race it effectively made the course unraceable, and all results and times are pretty meaningless.

Evans Collier Boy and Dawns Cognac, the two short priced open race favourites did not act in the Ground and were pulled up. Consequently they should be available at better odds next time.

The opening (very slow) hunt race would have been won by the very tired outsider Rusty Flame who was 20l clear when falling 2 out. This left Boring (J Cook) to stagger home alone.

Kinnefad King (C Williams) was the first of only two winning favourites, when he comfortably won the confined race. Tiger Lord and Krystal Haze put up brave efforts to chase him home, but were always held. Princess Lu was running fairly well before falling at the 13th (probably the shock of seeing the cornfield looming again).

Christian Williams completed a quick double on No Fiddling who scooted clear through the corn and came home by a distance. Bit Of A Citizen plugged on to be a distance behind in 2nd when refusing at the last.

Viardot was a first winner for Gemma Roberts in the ladies race at 20-1. Viardot took it up after four out as the runners headed into the corn and emerged 40l clear approaching 3 out when they came back into view. He extended his lead even further and was well on his way back to the winners enclosure before the Twilight Tom completed for second.

Bel-De-Moor and T Vaughan were lucky winners of the first restricted. J'accuse (Fiona Wilson) had unseated at the last when going clear. Teme Willow in second ran a good race.

Rusty Buck (S Blackwell) outfought long time leader Grand Canyon for the second division. The well-backed Mecca Prince made no show in the ground.

Gypsy Haze was just getting the better of Bright Beacon approaching the last in the first very slow maiden, when he made a bad mistake and gifted Bright Beacon and Steve Blackwell the race. Parsons Secret ran well for a long way, but Craigson the favourite was a well-beaten 4th when falling 2 out. Arctium tried his best to murder his jockey on the way to the start, dumping him three times and escaping.

Secret Rock (Jamie Jukes) drew clear from the 13th to win the 2nd division very easily.